Posted on 25 Jan. 2012 in The Florida Horsemen
Pari-Mutuel Barrel Racing’s “North Florida Horsemen’s Association” Controlled by Gretna Racing, LLC Owners
State of Florida Cheated Out of Literally 99.1 Percent Of Revenue It Could Be Earning Through Legitimate Quarter Horse Racing
Together with former third-generation Gulfstream Park attorney David Romanik, Gulfstream Park lobbyist Marc Dunbar is the part-owner of Gretna Racing, LLC, which is causing a deliberate horse racing industry decimation and dramatic loss of State revenue by having unilaterally introduced “pari-mutuel barrel racing” in North Florida. This outright mockery of Florida law is enabled by these individuals’ own non-profit corporation known as the “North Florida Horsemen’s Association.”
Because the “North Florida Horsemen’s Association” is controlled by Dunbar and Romanik, revenues from Gretna’s cardrooms and, ultimately, slot machines, can easily be funneled back to their self-owned Gretna Racing, LLC, not to the “North Florida Horsemen’s Association” members who have unwittingly signed away their State and Federal purse negotiating rights. These unsuspecting horsemen and women don’t realize that their rights to Gretna Racing’s revenues would otherwise be ensured under both Florida law and the Federal Interstate Horse Racing Act of 1978, the intent of which wasnever to have tracks own their own horsemen’s unions, since without ensuring lucrative purses to attract competitors, horse racing of any kind ceases to be a proper economic driver and job creator for any state.
If legitimate Quarter Horse racing sanctioned by the Florida Quarter Horse Racing Association (“FQHRA”) was taking place at Gretna Racing instead, these horsemen’s interests would otherwise be protected. What’s worse, the irony is that legitimate Florida Quarter Horse Racing Association sanctioned Quarter Horse racing at Hialeah Park is out-earning Gretna “pari-mutuel barrel racing” by 99.1 percent, as reported to the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering. Gretna Racing only pays $19.64 per day in pari-mutuel taxes.
With only 36 horses needed to complete Gretna’s entire “pari-mutuel barrel racing” meet, versus nearly 1,000 that are stabled right now at Hialeah Park, the FQHRA’s success, in turn, spurs economic development and job creation in both the racing and breeding industries, since that revenue is properly shared with horsemen according to State and Federal law, thanks to the FQHRA. As further evidence, Hialeah’s legitimate Quarter Horse meet has 803 licensed pari-mutuel employees registered at its facility, whereas Gretna Racing has only 38 comparable licensees. Documented attendance at Hialeah Park averages 4,100 per day. The Associated Press and other major media reported Gretna Racing to attract only 20-50 people per day.
But the fact is, Dunbar and Romanik are actually now profiting at Gretna Racing from the very same business plan that they, themselves, are suing the law-abiding horsemen’s associations for. During 2011, Dunbar and Romanik launched a spurious lawsuit against the Florida Quarter Horse Racing Association and the Florida Quarter Horse Breeders’ and Owners’ Association, in which they claim damage from what the Florida Legislature ordained these statutory organizations to do: Protect horsemen’s rights.
Nearly 450,000 members of United Florida Horsemen feel that the Florida Legislature should not support or negotiate with any person or entity that is currently engaged in a lawsuit designed to destroy horsemen’s livelihoods through self-dealing by means of dummy, self-owned horsemen’s associations designed exclusively to funnel pari-mutuel, card room and slot machine profits back to the track owners, rather than to properly disburse it to horsemen according to law.
To view State of Florida documentation on the ownership of “North Florida Horsemen’s Association,” click here.
The above information is based on reported Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering data.
Florida Non Profit Corporation: NORTH FLORIDA HORSEMEN’S ASSOCIATION, INC.
Document Number: N09000005229
FEI/EIN Number: APPLIED
Date Filed: 05/29/2009
Principal Address 215 SOUTH MONROE STREET, 2ND FLOOR TALLAHASSEE FL 32301-1839
Mailing Address P.O. BOX 10095 TALLAHASSEE FL 32302-2095
Registered Agent Name & Address: DUNBAR, MARC W 215 SOUTH MONROE STREET, 2ND FLOOR TALLAHASSEE FL 32301-1839
US Officer/Director Detail Name & Address Title D: ROMANIK, DAVID S 215 SOUTH MONROE STREET, 2ND FLOOR TALLAHASSEE FL 32301-1839
04/11/2011 — ANNUAL REPORT
04/09/2010 — ANNUAL REPORT
05/29/2009 — Domestic Non-Profit
The United Florida Horsemen are:
· National and Florida Barrel Horse Association (24,000 members)
· American Quarter Horse Association (350,000 national members; 7,163 Florida members)
· Florida Quarter Horse Racing Association (439 members)
· U.S. Trotting Association (25,000 members)
· Florida Standardbred Owners and Breeders Association (630 members)
· Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association (1,300 members)
· National Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (35,000 members)
· Florida Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association (5,000 members)